Friday, December 7, 2012
It wasn’t until college and celebrating my first Hannukah with Beka did I ever really understand the beauty, utility and absolute necessity of a food processor. You wanna shred 15 pounds or more of potatoes by hand for a bunch of latke loving college kids? I sure as heck don’t want to spend 8 crazy nights peeling, and shredding potatoes – I wanna spin that dreidel and actually enjoy my brisket!
After that experience of a night full of latke making, my eyes were opened to the possiblities that you can do more with a food processor than just shred potatoes.
*Also I want you to know that for some unwordly reason, my fingers aren’t working this morning and I can’t seem to type “shred” without adding an extra “d” to it. It’s going to be one of those days. *
Now that I have a full size food processor of my own, I’m shredding things like crazy! 2 pound block of cheese? Done.
Pie crusts? Whamo! So many years of toiling and ruining pie crusts doing them the “old fashioned way” with a pastry blender, Puh-leezzee. I get two crusts done in five minutes and they’re better than what I can get at the store. Especially now that I figured out all the tips and tricks for getting my crusts done in style. And butter. Duh.
Pie – in all forms just makes the world go ’round. Its is quite possibly the best dessert. This Cranberry Dutch Apple Pie just happens to be my new fangled favorite – and its perfect for the holiday season.
Doors opened, eyes seeing the light and so on and so forth.
KitchenAid has so generously donated a 13 cup food processor to one Country Cleaver winner and pie lover. Not that you only have to make pie crusts with this beauty, but I just love my food processor for it and I know you will, too.
The Food processor comes with a dough blade, for your crusts, a multipurpose blade, a reversible shredder, an adjustable slicing disc that allows you to make slices between 2 and 4 milimeters AND (because there were doubts that this things was totally freakin’ awesome?) – the whole things is BPA free and Dishwasher Safe.
I know, mind blown.
This beauty will get you in and out of the kitchen in no time flat so that you can enjoy the holidays with those you hold dear. But if you don’t want to spend more time than necessary with the crazy in-laws, out-laws and people you call “family”, than this giveaway isn’t for you. Sike! Enter away friends!
And don’t forget about the other 4 Days of Christmas that we’re celebrating right now! Including a box of USA Pears, a Smith’s Edgeware Knife Sharpener Set, a Bodum French Press and a LeCreuset Espresso and Cream and Sugar Set!
To Enter: (mandatory entry)
Tell me what is your favorite KitchenAid product? Your trusty stand mixer? Blender? Immersion blender?
Stop by KitchenAid and do a little virtual shopping and drop a few handy hints to your hunny about what you REALLY want this Christmas!
Like Country Cleaver and KitchenAid USA on Facebook – Each follow is one entry.
Share the giveaway on Facebook “On the 5th Day of Christmas KitchenAid and Wanna Be A Country Cleaver gave to me - a 13cup Food Processor! Enter to win here! http://ow.ly/fUuH3 “
Follow Country Clever and KitchenAid on Twitter – Each follow is one entry.
Share the Giveaway on Twitter – “On the 5th Day of Xmas @KitchenAidUSA & @CountryCleaver gave to me a 13cup Food Processor !http://ow.ly/fUuH3 #giveaway “
Follow Country Cleaver on Pinterest
Follow Country Cleaver on Instagram
Don’t forget – We’re still celebrating the 1st Day of Christmas with a Box of Pears from USA Pears .
The 2nd Day of Christmas with a LeCreuset Espresso and Sugar and Cream Set
The 3rd day of Christmas with a Smith’s Edgeware Knife Sharpener, Knife Guard and Spice Grater Set !
AND the 4th Day of Christmas with a Bodum 34 oz French Press!
Stop by and enter today!
*Fine Print* This food processor was donated to the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway by KitchenAid USA. Open to US Residents only. Sorry International friends. Giveaway will last until 12/14/12 and a random winner will be selected. They will have 48 hours to respond or forfeit prize to a new selected winner.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
On the fourth day of Christmas Bodum gave to you – a heavily caffeinated perfect cup of coffee.
I’m from Seattle. I grew up where Startbucks came to be. Starbucks is what we mainline straight to our veins. Or, Seattle’s Best or Tully’s or Terra Vida, or Millstone – ya know we just mainline whatever caffeinated brown liquid beverage we can find. Are we sad? NO.
But with the various ways to prepare your coffee, which way is truly the best? Esspresso? Drip? Americano? Instant? French Press?
(If anyone out there answered instant coffee is the best out there, I don’t know if we can be friends…)
I maintain, firmly – that the french press is the way to go. And Bodum USA is helping spread the French Press love by giving away a 34 ounce Bodum Crema French Press to one lucky Country Cleaver winner.
Ben and I wake up every Saturday and Sunday morning with a BIG Feistaware mug of French Press in hand. And I’m proud to have converted this ole stick in the mud, who used to buy the size 5 tin of instand coffee into a real coffee afficienado! *Pats myself on the back* That instant coffee habit of his was nearly a deal breaker…
You should wake up Christmas morning with a spring in your step, a strong cup of coffee in hand and watch the chilluns tear apart all of your red-eyed midnight wrap session work with a smile on your face and a twinkle in your eye. Bunny slippers are also – mandatory.
Hey, at least I’m not requiring you all don the Pink Nightmare from A Christmas Story!! You’re welcome.
Tell me – Do you need to sharpen you knifes this holiday season? (mandatory entry)
Like Country Cleaver and Bodum USA on Facebook – Each follow is one entry.
Share the giveaway on Facebook “Wake Up Christmas Morning with a coffee done right – Win a French Press from Bodum and Wanna Be A Country Cleaver! http://ow.ly/fSy7F “
Follow Country Clever and Bodum on Twitter – Each follow is one entry.
Share the Giveaway on Twitter – “Wake up Xmas morning w/ a GREAT cuppa coffee from @Bodum & @CountryCleaver !http://ow.ly/fSy7F #giveaway “
Follow Country Cleaver on Pinterest
Follow Country Cleaver on Instagram
Don’t forget – We’re still celebrating the 1st Day of Christmas with a Box of Pears from USA Pears , the 2nd Day of Christmas with a LeCreuset Espresso and Sugar and Cream Set and the 3rd day of Christmas with a Smith’s Edgeware Knife Sharpener, Knife Guard and Spice Grater Set ! Stop by and enter today!
*Fine Print* This French Press was donated to the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway by Bodum USA. Open to US Residents only. Sorry International friends. Giveaway will last until 12/20/12 and a random winner will be selected. They will have 48 hours to respond or forfeit prize to a new selected winner. This post does contain an affiliate link to my Amazon Store – under Fiestware Mug. I have ‘em and adore all things Fiesta.
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
I know something about sharp things – and contrary to popular belief – the sharper something is the safer it is. No foolin’. I could tell you about how lodging a throwing axe into my leg taught me that lesson, or I should probably just stick with the fact that whether it be a sharp chopping axe or a sharp kitchen knife, a sharp blade reduces the risk of slippage, and therefore cutting of at risk appendages and fingers.
Also yes, I used to play with sharp objects for fun. I have a scar on my shin and two slipped discs in my back to prove it.
The wonderful people of Edgeware want to make sure this season that you are safe from harm and have generously donated some fantastic loot to one lucky winner including…
An Edgeware manual knife sharpener,
Knife guard for all those newly sharpened blades,
and a spice grater to zest up the holidays.
Because the 12 Days of Christmas shouldn’t include anyone in the hospital from a rogue carrot chopping injury – we’re vowing to protect your fingers and sharpen up your knives in one fell swoop.
Tell me – Do you need to sharpen you knifes this holiday season? (mandatory entry)
Like Country Cleaver and Edgeware on Facebook – Each follow is one entry.
Share the giveaway on Facebook “Sharpen up the season with a Edgeware Giftset from Edgeware and Wanna Be A Country Cleaver! http://ow.ly/fQHah “
Follow Country Clever and Edgeware on Twitter – Each follow is one entry.
Share the Giveaway on Twitter – “Sharpen up those knives for Christmas dinner with @SmithsEdgeware & @CountryCleaver! http://ow.ly/fQHah #giveaway “
Follow Country Cleaver on Pinterest
Follow Country Cleaver on Instagram
Don’t forget – We’re still celebrating the 1st Day of Christmas with a Box of Pears from USA Pears and the 2nd Day of Christmas with a LeCreuset Espresso and Sugar and Cream Set! Stop by and enter today!
*Fine Print* This giveaway is open to US Residents only. Giveaway will end on December 12th. Winner will be randomly selected and e-mailed. if they do not respond within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen. I was not monetarily compensated for this post and I did not receive any product in exchange. Edgware was just in the Christmas spirit.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
What is the first thing you do in the morning? Throw the alarm clock across the room? Snooze it and try to eek out 15 more minutes from your sleep? Pretty sure that this represents most everyone out there.
First thing for Ben and I on the weekends is to split tasks and someone takes Huck out and the other is tasked with coffee making – usually me, which I am 110% okay with. Coffee or walking the dog – you’d pick coffee too.
And of course there ends up being the inevitable mug, or cup that you always use on that Saturday morning. It’s that trusty coffee cup that has, over the years, been incorporated into your ritual, where your day would somehow set the world spinning on a new axis if it weren’t for that particular mug. Don’t mess with the system here people.
Well, with the second day of Christmas beginning – it seems only reasonable to share in the holiday spirit and morning routine with a set of espresso cups, teaspoons and cream and sugar set from LeCreuset so that each and every morning can be special.
And let’s not lie – when the kids are going bonkers over the presents set below the tree Christmas morning, tearing apart all of your hardwork from a midnight wrap sesh, you know that a cup of coffee from a fine LeCreuset set is just what you will need to get the holidays started off right.
LeCreuset has generously donated a set of espresso cups, teaspoons and a cream and sugar set to the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway so that one lucky winner will be sufficiently awake on Christmas morning and able to enjoy the holiday with a slight bounce in their step.
And don’t forget to enter to win a whole Box full of Pears from USA Pears. It’s better than a Pear tree, cause it doesn’t require watering! And partridges not included.
The winner is SHELLY!!
Thanks to everyone for entering and keep an eye out for all the other fantastic giveaways during the 12 Days of Christmas!
Tell me – how do you take your coffee? Cream and Sugar? Creamer? Black and Strong? Instant? (if you say instant, I will banish you from this site forever…)
Like Country Cleaver and LeCreuset on Facebook – Each follow is one entry.
Share the giveaway on Facebook “Wake up Christmas morning with a Le Creuset Espresso Set from Le Creuset and Wanna Be A Country Cleaver! http://ow.ly/fOsw0 “
Follow Country Clever and LeCreuset on Twitter – Each follow is one entry.
Share the Giveaway on Twitter – “ Wake up Christmas morning with a LeCreuset Espresso Set from @LeCreuset & @CountryCleaver! http://ow.ly/fOsw0 “
Follow Country Cleaver and LeCreuset on Pinterest – Each follow is one entry
Follow Country Cleaver on Instagram
*Fine Print* This set was donated by LeCreuset for the 12 Days of Christmas giveaway. I was not compensated for this giveaway and I did not receive one in return. But I 110% adore LC in every way and appreciate their generous contribution to ensure that everyone has a merry Christmas. The giveaway will run until Tuesday, December 11. The winner will be chosen by random drawing from all entries and they will have 48 hours to contact me with their shipping information and the gift will be sent by LeCreuset. If not contacted within 48 hours another winner will be chosen. Happy Holidays to you and yours!
Monday, December 3, 2012
Did you hear what the 12 days of Christmas is going to cost this year? A. L.O.T.
As in $107,300. *jaw drops on floor, and preceeding floor below*
And since I, and probably you, weren’t one of the two that won the Powerball Jackpot a few days ago – odds are also, that neither of us could afford that pretty little price tag. But I’m betting we could both afford at least one thing on that list. A pear tree, perhaps? Neglect that fact that I live in an apartment and don’t have a place to plant a pear tree, but I could afford it. Or better yet the pears that grow on said tree. And a partridge. But birds hate me, so never mind.
The point is – it’s Christmas time and that means sharing the things we love with others. And this year, I want to make every’s holiday a little brighter, merrier and stress free in the kitchen. there will be treats to share so you don’t spend your days baking up a storm, tools that will speed along the cooking process so you can ya know – actually do what they call “enjoy” the holiday, and visit with the people that you love.
Unless you don’t like the people in your family and you want to spend your days tucked away in the kitchen avoiding the awkard conversations about why Johnny’s girlfriend has a snake tattoo wound up around her neck, or why there is a weird scratching sound coming from Grandma’s attic… then by all means, don’t enter these giveaways and I will save you from you family by keeping you in the kitchen.
But if you do happen to think your family is pretty neato burrito and want to actually see and converse with them this holiday season, enter these giveaway and win things that will move your holidays along and get you back to the party, and let’s have some fun!
Today’s first giveaway comes from USA Pears – how fitting since the first day of christmas is a dang bird in a tree! A pear tree! I sure love it when a plane comes together. December is national pear month and we’re kicking it off right by giving away a whole box of great and glorious pears. Since December is also all about baked goods, it might be nice to have a few pears on hand to ensure you can still fit into your skinny jeans by the end of the month. Its a win win, don’t you think?
Pears are filled with loads of fiber to keep you full, 25% of your daily value, and at only about 100 calories for a medium pear, you won’t have to commit to a New Years resolution since you’re starting the end of your year off on a healthier note.
And with a simply little squeeze near the stem of your pear you can test your pear for ripeness and be devouring it in no time flat.
For a quick and simple dessert, my favorite way to eat pears is in a quick pear crisp – it takes 20 minutes to bake and with just a few pears on hand you can feed a crowd in a rustic way with no muss and no fuss. C’mon skinny jeans – there is hope for us all yet! But if you’re into something more “carby” then maybe a Spiced Pear and Chocolate Bread Pudding is more your speed. Either way – its a win all around.
GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED:
The WINNER IS Jen L!!
Congrats Jen, an e-mail has been sent to you. Thanks everyone for participating and don’t forget to check out the other Great giveaways going on during the remaining 12 Days of Christmas!
Le Creuset Espresso Cream and Sugar Set, Edgeware Knife Sharpener Set, Bodum French Press, 13 cup Kitchen Aid Food Processor, and King Arthur Flour Baking Bundle Giveaway
To enter to win a box of USA Pears:
Visit USA Pears and leave a comment telling me what variety of pear you most want to try.
Follow USA Pears on Twitter
Follow Country Cleaver on Twitter
Like USA Pears on Facebook
Like Country Cleaver on Facebook
Follow Country Cleaver on Instagram – Country Cleaver
Follow Country Cleaver on Pinterest
Follow USA Pears on Pinterest
Individual Pear Crisps
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 30 MInutes
4 whole Bartlett Pears
⅔ cups Flour
½ cups Oats
⅓ cups Brown Sugar
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
6 Tablespoons Butter, Cubed And Chilled
Preheat oven to 375ºF.
On a cutting board, slice pears in half. To ensure that the pears lay flat while baking, slice off a small piece on the outside of each pear. The middle of the pear should be facing up. With a melon baller or spoon, scoop out the seeds of the pears. Place pears onto a baking sheet, or in the bottom of pie dishes.
In a medium bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients. With a pastry cutter, cut in butter until crumbles develop.
Top pear halves with crumbles.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until crumbles turn golden brown on top. Serve while warm. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if you’re feeling daring.
Megan Pence-Keno - Country Cleaver
Friday, November 30, 2012
I dare you. Just go on and say. Better butter better. Now, five times fast. Somewhere around take three I think the e’s and the u’s start to become interchangeable but the point remains that butter is in fact better when it comes from Darigold.
Healthy cows, dedicated farmers, and a mission to ensure that sustainable practices and impecable care for cows lead to better butter are factors that set Darigold apart from the rest of the pack. Started in 1918, the Darigold cooperative has grown to include over 500 local dairies that spread out over the entirety of the western states.
And it’s not just superior butter that they produce, but everything from milks, to creams, cottage cheese and recovery drinks. It’s what Darigold does. And they do it well. As a native PNW’esterner Darigold is sononymous with quality and its a staple in many, many houses. It’s what I grew up with. And for the last 94 years, its what many kids grew up with and they shows no sign of stopping.
What continues to make Darigold a household staple is their determined committement to quality, in rBST-free milk and cream, innovative tools and a willingness to try new things. In 2003, while other manufactuerer’s were content with staying the course of standard butter churns – Darigold stepped out in front and became on of the only dairies in the nation to import a European vaccuum churn by the renounced Simon Freres Company. 150 years of butter churning under their belts means they know what they’re talking about and Darigold followed suit.
While most conventially churned butters contain upwards of 4 or even 6 percent air, the innovative vaccuum churn used by Darigold results in a creamy and smooth butter with less than 1% air. Why would ever want to pay for air? I wouldn’t!
And if you think those seemingly measley few percentage points of air don’t matter? You’d be wrong. Baked goods come out more shapely and stable, and sauces hold that magical and prized smooth consistency longer. Better butter mixes into batter and doughs more in a velvety way, melding with other ingredients and binding them together in a buttery hug. Yeah, butter hugs right back – hadn’t you heard?
Raise you hands if you want a butter hug! *Shoots hand into the air* I do! Don’t lie, you do too. We all do.
And with a pound cakes like these – I can attest to the magic that better butter creates. The browned butter, nutty smells filled up my kitchen, and wafted around the room in transcent ways. Let’s not get me started on how life altering the butter toffee was either.
The butter toffee liquifies on your tongue and swims with the chocolate in an almost euphoric way. It’s a “When Harry Met Sally Egg Salad” kinda thing here friends. No foolin’.
Care and passion for their craft go a long way in making better butter better – and the Darigold farmers have really struck gold with this recipe. Buttery, delicious, melt in your mouth GOLD.
Old Fashioned Brown Butter Pound Cake
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 25 Minutes for Mini-bundts; 75 Minutes for Standard Bundt
Total Time: 1 Hour for Mini Bundts; 1 Hour 40 Minutes for Standard Bundt
1 cup Darigold Butter
2 cups Sugar
2 1/2 cups Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1 cup Darigold Whipping Cream
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
To Brown Butter:
In a saucepan over medium to medium-high heat, melt butter until it foams and turns brown. About 5-10 minutes. Stir constantly. Remove from heat and set aside to cool and begin to solidify.
For Bundt Cake:
Add butter and sugar to a large bowl attached to a stand mixer, and cream together. About 3 minutes. Add in one egg at a time and beat for 30 seconds between addition.
In large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
With mixer at low speed, alternate adding in flour mixture and whipping cream to the sugar/egg mixture. Stir in vanilla.
Pour batter into a greased and floured bundt pan, or mini-bundt pans.
Place pan into a cold oven and set to 325 degrees. Bake for 25 minutes for mini-bundts and 75 minutes for standard bundt pan. Test bundt cake with a toothpick to ensure they are baked through. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Remove from pan after 20 minutes and allow to cool on rack completely. Slice and serve.
Lightly adapted from Darigold original recipe.
*Note* This post was sponsored by Darigold. I was compensated for this post and for recreating this recipe along with shooting the photos. All opinions are my own and I am delighted to represent a wonderful company and hometown dairy brand and staple.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
For those of us who now have to jump, wiggle and Spanx our way back into our regular everyday clothes, here’s a treat that’ll get your the carbs you crave with an extra dose of fruit, sass and limited guilt – Cantaloupe Bruschetta. And right now, I can use all the help I can get.
My boots finally came today – two days under the wire for me to don them on this weekend’s trip to Virginia. And since I tore through my local Eddie Bauer outlet on a surprisingly quiet Black Friday, it only seemed reasonable, and utterly necessary, to get some fashionable boots to go with ‘em. To go with that moutainy chick look an all.
Except the struggles don’t end there. Me and tall boots do not have a favorable history – rather we have a non existent history, due to the fact that my calves are the size of most “normal sized” humans thighs. Thank you mom for the Czech “sturdiness” and nearly blind left eye. Yes, yes – there are extended calf boots, even Frye’s has ‘em. And for eons I have lusted after them. But I need E.x.t.e.n.d.e.d size boots – 17 ½” calves here people! This is no joke. And ALL muscle – in a riduculous-draft-horses-have-smaller-legs-than-me calves kinda way. To the Fat Woman catalog!! So these are what I came out with, in brown. Not bad eh? A little rough, little buckley, a little freakin’ perfect. Except jeans and boot socks won’t fit under them, just the jeans. Oh well. What’s a Czech girl to do?
So after a jaunt to the gym to rack up my 5th mile of the day I was craving these. And they never fail to deliver with sweet cantaloupe (which I usually am not a fan of unless perfectly ripe), fresh mozzarella, basil, and for good measure some crispy prosciutto. Oh and well duh – a drizzle (hefty pour) of Balsamic of Modena Glaze. I can’t get enough of these glazes. Because they’re perfect on everything – like this too. It was only on TV!
Really – of all things, there are worse things to eat my ginormous-calved feelings with.
Cantaloupe Bruschetta with Balsamic of Modena Glaze
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 20 Minutes
1/2 Cantaloupe, skinned and diced
8 ounces Mozzarella, diced
4 ounces Prosciutto, thinly sliced and fried
1/4 cup Basil, chiffonade
1 loaf French Baguette, sliced on the bias
2 Tbsp STAR Garlic Infused Olive Oil
1/3 cup STAR Family Reserve Modena Balsamic Glaze
In a large bowl, combine cantaloupe, mozzarella and basil. Gently toss to combine. Set aside. Turn on oven broiler and place rack nearest to the element. Lay sliced baguette onto a baking sheet and drizzle or brush with garlic olive oil. Place bread into broiler to toast. Remove once golden brown and allow to cool.
In skillet over medium high heat, fry the thinly sliced prosciutto ribbons until they are crispy. Remove from skillet and drain on a paper towel. Set aside.
To assemble, top each slice of baguette with a generous portion of cantaloupe/mozzarella mixture. Top with fried prosciutto and then drizzle STAR Modena Balsamic Glaze over the top. Serve and devour.
*Note* Because cantaloupe is so juicy, do not place on baguette slices until you are ready to serve to ensure the bread stays crispy.
Original by Megan Pence-Keno
*Note* Star Fine Foods provided me with their line of Glazes that I have used to create this recipe. I was compensated for this recipe, but all opinions of the glaze are my own. It’s amazing stuff, really really.
Monday, November 26, 2012
After four days, I think I can somewhat, kinda sorta, safely say that I am starting to stir from my post-turkey coma. Only then of course setting myself right back into a tryptophanic state with this.
I know, someone spank me – I’m such a bad, bad girl. But Thanksgiving leftovers are totally where its at. And I’m quite convinced that hot and cold turkey sammiches are the end all be all of the Thanksgiving holiday. Wait, I’ll stop myself here before I have to retract too much further. Turkey sammies ANNNNDDD pumpkin pie for breakfast are the end all be all of Thanksgiving. Not together. Pie for breakfast, sammies for lunch.
Whoever told you that pie wasn’t a legitimate breakfast option is clearly allergic to living. Because it is. With dairy from whipped cream, some sort of bread like component from the crust, protein from the evaporated millk (Maybe?), and of course vegetables from the pumpkin. Just neglect the sugar in it and we’re in the clear.
It is so ordered.
And for lunch – this is mandatory. To help clean out your fridge. Ben devoured his in the time it took be to just begin eating mine, to which I only could finish half – and then he for lunch the next day he ate my other half!! I was so excited for it – but he snaked me and devoured it himself! So now I know – it must be That. Good.
But for the sake of your waistlines, since we’ve all done enough damage on them as it is – these subs ARE best shared. Don’t be a hero.
Ben and I celebrated our first holiday together as husband and wife, just the two of us. And Huck, too. Naturally. And this time with such a quiet atmosphere it was almost unnervingly quiet compared to the holidays surrounded by my family of 6 and an extended family of 25 plus. And still a full Thanksgiving was had, with a 10 pound bird that refused to defrost, cranberries that were far to orangey, Ray’s Sweet Potato casserole that had to be made or risk a melt down over the skipping of a Keno family tradition, and a dog that flat tired me every chance he got as I mulled around the kitchen and tripped me far to often trying to unseat the foods as I carted them from the kitchen to our dining room. Ohhh the holiday joy.
He may look cute, innocent, and simple – but its a ruse. He knows what’s going on.
But for all of the dirty dishes, jeans that now fit a little tighter than they used to, pie for breakfast and overly orangey cranberry sauce – I am so thankful for everything that happened this year. From marrying the love of my life, getting to pet the softest puppy ears every day and having a steady job, traveling to wonderful places like this and this, friends that make the world go ’round, and an amazing family that I couldn’t have succeeded without – I have every reason to be thankful. And I am, endlessly.
Now – enough with the smutz and go make with the turkey coma!
Turkey Day Leftover Sandwich
Yield: 2 Subs - 2-4 servings
Prep Time: 10 Minutess
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 20 Minutes
Take all those Turkey Day leftovers and sandwich it between crusty bread. Hello Thanksgiving Coma!
2 Soft Sub Rolls, split in half
1 1/2 cup Thanksgiving Day Stuffing
2 cups Shredded Turkey
4 slices Cheddar Cheese
1 cup Green Bean Casserole, heated up
4 Tbsp Mayonaise
1 Tbsp Mustard
Salt and Pepper
Split sub rolls in half. Spread mayo evenly the subs. Drizzle with mustard of choice. On one half of each sub top with shredded turkey. On other half of subs top divide stuffing. Place topped sub halves onto a lined baking sheet. Adjust oven rack to the top of the oven and turn onto broil. Place under broiler to heat. Once turkey and stuffing are steaming and heated through, top shredded turkey with cheese and allow to melt under broiler. Once cheese has melted, top with green bean casserole and return to broiler to heat as well.
Remove from oven and cool slightly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Quickly press halves of sandwiches together. Slice and devour.
Country Cleaver Original. Megan Pence-Keno
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
I’m running through a mental checklist (emphasis on the mental) of everythin that is needed to go into prepping the ultimate Thanksgiving and spouting off the list at random points in the day, twitching my left eye and sounding a little to spot on to Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man…
That could also be the sleep deprivation talking… or the two day migraine thanks to the neighbors puppy that insists on barking at 9 as I go to bed and 3 am as I try to sleep – E.v.e.r.y.d.a.y.
Wanna know what I’m thankful for? EARPLUGS! Even if they dont’ completely drown out the bark of that (albeit sweet and fluffy) furrball…
Wanna know what else I’m thankful for? PIE. This pie. Sweet, crumly, and super tangy with a cranberry bottom. If you’re stretching for a last minute pie – this is it. I mean it. Yeah, yeah I tell you to make things all the time – but this is so good Ben refused to let it out of our house so I could take it to work for my coworkers. They are currently in the planning stages of a revolt against Ben, because after glowing about this pie – I have led them down the path of temptation and left them hanging with no pie to be found. Ben is public pie enemy number 1.
Sweet apples, just soft enough but still having some texture.
Cranberrys, tart and fabulous perfectly balancing the sweet.
And the crumble – oh don’t even get me started on the crumble.
And remember those pie crust problems I was having? No more!! Victory is MINE! Bwahaha. Conquer all the crusts.
But if this apple cranberry crumble isn’t your speed, try my Irish Cream Chocolate Silk Pie, or even better yet – my Nutella Pecan Pie. C’mon, you know you can’t say ‘no.’ This is no time to be a hero – just eat all the pies!
Lastly – in case I haven’t said it enough lately – I just want to send a very personal thank you to everyone who stops by to visit me here, on Facebook, on the Twittervserse or on the Instagrams. You all feed my soul and make me thankful everyday for great friends, a wonderful community and helping me realize we’re all a little crazy, but that’s okay cause we’re all in it together. I’m eternally thankful. So go get your fat pants on, devour all the pies, turkey too if you must, and have a fantastic holiday weekend.
Cranberry Dutch Apple Pie
Prep Time: 1 Hour
Cook Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours 15 Minutes plus resting time
A tangy twist on an apple pie favorite.
Pie Crust (2 9-inch crusts):
2 1/2 cup Flour
2 Tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Salt
1/2 cup Shortening (cut and chilled)
12 Tbsp Butter (cut and chilled)
6-8 Tbps Water, ice cold
3 1/2 pounds Apples, thinly sliced (Jonagold, or other baking apple)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 tsp Lemon Zest
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 egg lightly beaten for egg wash
2 cups Cranberries
1/4 cup Orange juice
1/2 cup Sugar
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Salt
1 cup Flour
1/2 cup Butter, softened
1 cup Oats
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
In food processor combine flour, sugar, salt and pulse to combine. Add in chilled shortening and butter and pulse until pea size balls form. Add in ice water and turn on until the dough starts to form a ball. Start with 6 tablespoons of water and use additional if necessary. Divide dough into two and form into disks. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. Roll out one disk to 12" in diameter. Place in pie dish and poke with a fork several times. Return dough and pie dish to fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
For pie filling:
Place sliced apples, sugar, salt, cinnamon in a large bowl and toss to coat throughly. Pour into a large dutch oven or large saucepan and heat over medium heat stirring frequently to soften the apples. Simmer apples gently for about 15 minutes. Pour out onto a baking sheet, and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, pour into a collander over a bowl and allow to finish draining. Reserve 1/4 cup of the apple juice run-off and mix with lemon juice.
In small sauce pan combine cranberries, sugar, orange juice, salt, and cinnamon. Over medium heat, simmer cranberries mixing gently until they burst. Simmer until the mixture begins to thicken and turn into a jam like consistency. If berries are too juicy and don't set, add in 1 tablespoon of cornstarch. Bring to a boil again and then cool.
For Crumble Topping:
In large bowl combine all ingredients and toss with a fork until crumble starts to form. Use hands if necessary to combine and large clumps will form. Chille until just before you are ready to bake the pie.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Remove chilled pie crust from the fridge and pour in cranberry jam into the bottom of the dish. Top with cooled apples. Pour l/4 cup apple/lemon juice mixture over the top of the apples. Sprinkle crumb coating over the top of the apples, evenly. Place pie onto a baking sheet to catch any over flow that might occur while baking. Cover pie lightly with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil, lower temperature to 350 and bake additional 30-35 minutes until apples are fully tender and crust and crumble are golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on cooling rack for at least 3 hours so the juice and apples all set.
Slice, serve and devour.
Lightly adapted from America's Test Kitchen Deep Dish Apple Pie.
Monday, November 19, 2012
Four days and counting – cue the panic and break out the fat pants! Are you ready? I most assuredly am not, but with a plethora of recipes floating around the interwebs, I’m breathing a little bit easier.
This is Ben and my first holiday as a married couple and we have decided to forego the chaos and upheaval that normally comes with big family holidays. Normally we would have to choose between splitting our holiday one of three ways, with my dad and step-mom, mom and step-dad or Ben’s parents 300 miles away – but with him in the middle of his first quarter of nursing school and my trying to just keep pace with the rest of the world, it seemed like the best option for us was to spend our first holiday as man and wife together – just the two of us. And Huck, too – naturally.
This also happens to be my first year of cooking my own Thanksgiving, all by myself. o.O
Ben will be tucked away banging his head into his desk finishing a last minute 10 page paper on nursing ethics and peeking through the door of our room to catch the latest football scores and I will be commandeering the remote and be watching Harry Potter all the way through getting myself primed for the impending Christmas season. Am I the only one who craves a little wand waving and quidditch during the rainy fall months? It just gets me in the spirit. Don’t know why, but it probably has something to do with me being weird and loony. You already knew that though.
Anywayy… since this is Ben’s and my first Turkey Day together, I wanted to make sure that it felt like home. The one resounding requirement to our Thanksgiving fare was Ray’s Sweet Potato Casserole. Never have I met Ray, but he is a casserole legend and this is the one dish that everyone looks forward to in the Keno family during the holiday of Thanks. So being the wonderful wife I am, I am making this just for Ben. Where’s my wife of the year award? I suspect it is in the mail now.
This is one that would be easy to make head of time and pop in the oven 25 minutes before dinner is ready. Score 1 for Megan and easy planning!
I started with two sweet potatoes – since this is just me and Ben, and boiled them like regular potatoes. Then drain away!
Now this beauty is how I went about “mashing” my potatoes – it’s a ricer. If you don’t have one of these, I highly, astronomically recommend it. It’s doesn’t mash as much as it aerates your potatoes, keeping them light and fluffy instead of condensed and brick-like. Unless you’re into that sort of thing, which I pass no judgements.
This one, in particular – the RSVP Ricer, has two removable and interchangeable presses, this one is the finer of the two. *Sidebar* this ricer was the highest rated ricer by America’s Test Kitchen. And they test ‘em ALLL, so I trust ‘em. *End Sidebar*
The ricer is super handy because it also – oh so conventiently – has a bowl rest on it so you can let it sit on your bowl as you press.Who wants their taters flying through the air ala Three Stooges – no one.
Then into the bowl went buttah (obviously), sugar, eggs and a little milk.
Oh, and some vanilla.
Fold it around so you don’t flatten the sweet potatoes until the butter melts deliciously into the crevasses and you’re ready to put it into the baking dish.
Smooth it out in the bottom of a baking dish and get ready to top it with a little brown sugar, coconut, chopped pecans (or in my case walnuts), flour and maauurr buttah!
Fork that baby til it crumbles and sprinkle onto the sweet potatoes. Now you’re ready to bake. Put into a 325 oven for 20-25 minutes or until crispy and golden brown. Now this one is fantastic if you want to make it a day or even two ahead of time, and you just throw it into the oven as your bring your bird out of the oven to rest. Just switcharoo and you’re ready to go as soon as the bird is ready to carve. Viola!
Ray's Sweet Potato Casserole
Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Cook Time: 20-25 Minutes
Total Time: 45 Minutes
A family tradition that can be made a day or two ahead of time!
4-5 Sweet Potatoes, cubed
3/4 cup Sugar
½ cup Milk
2 Eggs, beaten
1 tsp Vanilla
6 Tbsp Butter, softened
1 cup Coconut
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 pecans (or in my case walnuts), chopped
¾ cup flour
6 tbsp butter, melted
3 tbsp Butter, melted
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In large saucepan or stock pot, boil water. Add in cubed sweet potatoes and simmer just until potatoes are fork tender. Drain in colander and set aside. Place ricer over bowl and press potatoes in multiple batches. Add in vanilla, softened butter, milk, beaten eggs and sugar. Fold everything together until butter has melted and everything is evenly dispersed.
Pour into a lightly greased baking dish. Set aside.
In bowl, mix together coconut, brown sugar, chopped pecans, and flour. Stir in melted butter and mix until the coconut/brown sugar/pecan mixture starts to look like crumbles and is pea sized. Sprinkle over the top of the sweet potatoes.
Place in oven for 20-25 minutes, or until top is golden brown. Serve warm.
*Note* This dish can be made a day or two ahead of time and bake day-of. You may need to increase the time of baking if it comes straight of the fridge and into the oven.
Original recipe from Ray Hulet.
Now for 102 extra recipes for your Thanksgiving holiday – cause you weren’t indecisive enough already!! Check out some of my favorites. You just know these will be a hit!!
Because, 101 recipes just wasn’t trying hard enough.
Artichoke Dip – Hill Country Cook
Crispy Salmon Bites - Running to the Kitchen
Roasted Tomato and Brie Baked Brie Dip - Country Cleaver
White Bean and Garlic Hummus – Bran Appetit
Cheesy Shredded Chicken Bites – Dine and Dish
Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke Tapenade - Country Cleaver
Baked Bourbon Buffalo Wings – Bev Cooks
Asparagus Parmiaiano Puff – Bell’alimento
Asparagus and Brie Perogies – Country Cleaver
Flagship Cheese, Asparagus and Pear Bites – Country Cleaver
Bacon Gorgonzola Guacamole – Simply Scratch
Prosciutto Warpped Gorgonzola Stuffed Dates - Simply Scratch
Sweet and Spicy Golden Plum Dip with Coconut Shrimp – Country Cleaver
Rosemary Pecans and Cranberries – Country Cleaver
Chantrelle Ricotta Crostini – Heather Cristo
Marinated Beecher’s and Caprese Bites – Country Cleaver
BLT Dip - Climbing Grier Mountain
Basil Infused Vodka - Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Eggnog Martini – Recipe Girl
Blood Orange Champagne Cocktail – Heather Cristo
Sloe Gin Sours – London Bakes
Irish Coffee – My Life as a Mrs.
Spiced Pumpkin Martini – My Life as a Mrs.
Deep Fried Turkey - Spicy Perspective
Turkey – The Novice Chef
Honey Herbed Glazed Turkey – Taste and Tell
Roasted Turkey with Herb Butter and Roasted Shallots – Cookin’ Canuck
My Favorite Turkey Brine – The Pioneer Woman
Malt-Beer Brined Turkey – Love and Olive Oil
Asian Turkey – Spicy Perspective
Sourdough Bread Stuffing – Perry’s Plate
Roasted Butternut, Sausage and Fennel Stuffing – Gimme Some Oven
Chantrelle Stuffing – Honest Food
Sourdough and Cornbread Sausage Stuffing – Picky Palate
Oyster Dressing – The Pioneer Woman
Bacon Leek Stuffing with Sage - Simply Scratch
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar - Two Peas and Their Pod
Asparagus with Shallot Caper Vinaigrette – Country Cleaver
Green Bean Casserole - Table for Two
Broccli Gratin - Running to the Kitchen
Potato Artichoke and Goat Cheese Gratin – Domestic Fits
Roy’s Spicy Sausage and Rice – The Church Cook
Baby Carrots – Picky Palate
Roasted Delicate Squash – Rachel Cooks
Wild Rice Caramelied Shallots, Cranberries and Pecans – Eat Live Run
Oven Roasted Vegetables – Spicy Perspective
Spaghetti Squash with Swiss Chard – Cookin’ Canuck
Potatoes of all kind:
Apple Balsamic Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Goat Cheese and Cranberries - Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Scalloped Potatoes – Recipe Girl
Shepherd’s Pie – Lauren’s Latest
Bacon and Caramelized Onion Mashed Potatoes - Cookin’ Canuck
Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes – Rachel Cooks
Apple Bacon Stuffed Sweet Potatoes – How Sweet Eats
Easy Cheesy Mother-In-Law Potatoes – Hill Country Cook
Cajun Seasoned Potatoes - Simply Scratch
Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Blue Cheese – Cookin’ Canuck
Brown Sugar Sweet Potatoes - Miss in the Kitchen
Orange-Cranberry Sauce - Baked By Rachel
Bourbon Vanilla Cranberry Sauce - Eat, Live, Run
Homemade Cranberry Sauce – Simply Scratch
Cranberry Relish – Kvetchin Kitchen
Cranberry Orange Sauce – Table for Two Blog
Boozy Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce – Realistic Nutritionist
Potato Leek Soup – Heather Cristo
Lentil Soup – Simply Scratch
Roasted Corn and Beer Chowder- Country Cleaver
Tarragon Borscht – FouLou
Chicken and Guinness Stout Stew – Country Cleaver
Creamless Tomato Basil Soup – Country Cleaver
Butternut Squash Soup – Table for Two
Watercress Soup – Country Cleaver
Cream of Potato Soup - Comfortably Domestic
Cauliflower Soup – Running with Tweezers
Rolls and Bread:
No Knead Cheese Studded Dinner Rolls – Farmgirl Gourmet
Hefeweizen Honey Rolls – The Beeroness
Pumpkin Beer Bread – Country Cleaver
Buttery Croissants - The Novice Chef
Homemade Pretel Bites – Dine and Dish
Black Pepper Parmesan Drop Biscuits – Bake Your Day
Apple Butter Yeast Rolls – Spicy Perspective
Rosemary Sea Salt Focaccia – Country Cleaver
Cornmeal Rolls - Comfortably Domestic
Nutella Pecan Pie – Country Cleaver
Sweet Potato Pie with No Roll Crust - Bakeaholic Mama
Mom’s Black Forest Cherry Pie - Inside Nana Bread’s Head
Cranberry Crumble Bars (Gluten Free and Regular) – Country Cleaver
Irish Cream and Chocolate Silk Pie - Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Pie – Brown Eyes Baker
Pecan Pie Bars – Table for Two
Apple Pie Poptart Fudge – Domestic Rebel
Apple Cider Caramels - Smitten Kitchen
Spiced Pear and chocolate Bread Pudding – Country Cleaver
Plum Pie – The Realistic Nutritionist
Individual Pear Crumbles – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Cheesecake Crack Dip – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Praline Monkey Bread- Country Cleaver
Roasted Almon Pecan Pumpkin Butter – Running to the Kitchen
Chai Cheesecake Bars with Pumpkin Spice Ganache – Country Cleaver
Old Fashioned Pumpkin Pie – Simply Recipes
Pumpkin Beer Bread – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Cheesecake – My Baking Addiction
Pumpkin Cheesecake Gelato – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes – Table for Two Blog
Pumpkin Pasta and Turkey Sausage – Table for Two
Day After Leftovers:
Leftover Turkey Casserole - Lauren’s Latest
Day After Breakfast Hash with Cheddar Mashed Potato Pancakes - How Sweet Eats
Turkey, Brie and Apple Panini – The Novice Chef
Rosemary Hummus Turkey Wraps – She Wears Many Hats
Asian Turkey Lettuce Wraps – Bev Cooks
Turkey Enchiladad Verde Soup – Homesick Texan